Saturday, March 29, 2008

Pratima anae (Yarlagadda) Indian American beauty

Pratima Yarlagadda

Date of Birth
6 October 1981, Manhattan, Kansas, USA

Growing up in a small Amish town in the heart of the Midwest, Pratima Anae´ got her start in the entertainment industry when she was crowned Miss Indiana USA. Pratima went on to make Miss Universe history when she placed in the top six at Miss USA, making her the first woman of East Indian descent to place in the top ten. Her accomplishments were featured in such publications as India Today recognizing her as a forthcoming East Indian presence in the entertainment industry.

After moving to New York City Pratima signed with internationally renowned Ford Models. Her work has been featured in such publications as Vogue Italia, Cosmopolitan, Glamour, and Town and Country among others.

Pratima currently resides in Los Angeles. Where she is represented by Ford Models, Innovative Artists, and JKA. Her Film and TV credits include appearances in “How To Seduce DifficultWomen”, “MyBrother”, “Beautiful”, “All My Children”, and “Guiding Light”.

Additionally, Pratima is hosting a series of lifestyle events in conjunction with She has conducted interviews with Salman Rushdie, Padma Lakshmi, Kal Penn, and Mira Nair in connection with this endeavor.

She is the first woman of East Indian descent to place in the top ten at Miss USA.
She is a Ford Model.
for more videos of pratima

Rajasekhar Reddy Government looted public money and gifted to rich: CAG report

HYDERABAD 29 March: Endorsing the criticism that the Andhra Pradesh Industrial Infrastructure Corporation (APIIC), the nodal agency for creation of infrastructure in the state, has been unduly benefiting certain units by allotting land at less than normal prices, the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has charged the corporation with unduly favouring certain allottees and causing a loss of Rs 304.52 crore to the state exchequer. According to the CAG report which was tabled in the Assembly on Friday, most of the beneficiaries were from the IT sector.

The 11 cases that were pointed out by the report include industry majors like Microsoft, Amazon and Kanbay apart from IT infrastructure developers including Indu Tech Zone, Brahmani Infra Tech, Stargage Properties and Divyasree Holdings.

The list also includes Ananth Technologies, Hyderabad Gems SEZ, Visual Soft and Tourism Department of Andhra Pradesh. Apart from these 11 companies, the report has also found deviations in allotment to Varun Motors, Sri Kiran Technologies, Info Vision, Analogic and Padma Power Loom.

The report for the year ended March 2007 has pointed out the way the corporation kept aside certain procedures for price fixation and land allotment in order to benefit the allottees.

As per the norms for allotment of land to IT companies and price fixation, the APIIC went by the recommendations of the Consultative Committee on IT Industries (CCITI) constituted by the government for administering and ensuring growth of IT sector in the state. However, the price of the land to be allotted is fixed based on the recommendations of the price fixation committee (PFC).

However, CAG, said the land to about 11 companies during the year under review was allotted at lower rates in comparison to the rates fixed by the PFC. "Thus charging of rates below the rates fixed by the PFC was irregular and clearly an undue favour to the allottees resulting in loss of Rs 304.52 crore," the report said.

Indu Tech Zone, the report said, derived a benefit of Rs 71.40 crore by getting the land allotted at lower rates.

Similar benefit was passed on to Brahmani Infra Tech and Stargage too. All these three infrastructure companies were allotted 250 acres each at Hardware Park, Hyderabad at Rs 20 lakh an acre while the applicable rate was Rs 48.56 lakh.

In the case of Microsoft too, the CAG pointed out that the differential in the rate applicable and rate charged benefited the company to the tune of Rs 45.60 crore. Microsoft India (R&D) was allotted land in four parcels - 12.72 acres, 11.48 acres, 5.5 acres and 7.05 acres - at Manikonda. In the case of the first parcel, while the rate applicable was Rs 60 lakh an acre, the IT major was asked to pay Rs 29 lakh an acre. In the remaining three parcels, against the applicable rate of Rs 2.02 crore per acre, the company was allotted land for Rs 29 lakh an acre.

Similar deviation was also found in the case of Amazon where the company was allotted 10.56 acres at hardware park for Rs 60 lakh an acre as against the applicable rate of Rs 2.02 crore. This transaction, according to the report, resulted in a loss of Rs 3.94 crore.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Solar Semiconductor in supply pact with IBC

Hyderabad-based Solar Semiconductor Private Limited (SSPL), (Hari Surapaneni, President & CEO) a rapidly growing producer of photovoltaic (PV) modules, has entered into a partnership with IBC Solar AG of Germany for supply of its products worth $575 million (Rs 2,300 crore) over a period of next three years. IBC is a distributor and systems integrator of solar PV products in Europe.

Following this partnership, SSPL is expecting to post a turnover of $300 million (Rs 1,200 crore) in the financial year ending December 2008. SSPL had started commercial operations in September 2007 and did a business of $10 million (Rs 40 crore) during the four-month operations last year. At present, the company’s order book position is full for the next three years, SSPL chief executive officer and president, Hari R Surapaneni, said.

IBC has been growing rapidly in the recent years and needs a stable supplier of high-quality modules. “In Solar Semiconductor, we have found a strong partner willing to listen and respond to varying requirements of our customers,” IBC vice-president (purchasing and product management ), Christian Lieberth, said.

Stating that the strategic partnership was mutually beneficial, Surapaneni said the company was actively considering setting up a manufacturing facility in Europe, most likely in Germany, in the next 15 months.

Apart from expanding the installed capacity of its Hyderabad plant from 50Mw to 200Mw by this year-end at a cost of $100 million (Rs 400 crore), SSPL has lined up investment to the tune of $300 million (Rs 1,200 crore) to fund its expansion plans worldwide this year.

According to Surapaneni, SSPL would be investing Rs 4,400 crore over the next 10 years for expanding the capacity of its existing manufacturing facilities in India. It is planning to come out with an initial public offering for this purpose next year.

SSPL recently appointed Perry G Hayes as its chief financial officer. Prior to this appointment, Hayes was senior vice-president- investor relations and treasurer of US-based global electronics manufacturer, Solectron Corporation.

MIC Electronics secures orders worth Rs 61cr

MIC Electronics,(Dr.M.V.Rama Rao, MD&CEO) a player in Light Emitting Diode (LED) display systems has received an order and license from Delhi Metro Rail Corporation for installation and maintenance of 25 full colour day and night LED Video display boards at 8 metro stations of line-3.

The installation is worth Rs 45 crore and will be implemented over the next six months. These LED displays will be networked and controlled from a single location and are first of its kind for Indian Railways.

The company also announced that its wholly-owned subsidiary, Maave Electronics has received orders from different zonal divisions of Indian Railways along with the coach factories for the supply of approximately 20,000 coach emergency LED lamps worth over Rs 8 crore.

Also, MIC Electronics, US based wholly-owned subsidiary and LEDSTAR of Canada have entered into a strategic partnership to deploy Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) and LED single / full colour Variable Message Signs (VMS). The partnership enables MIC Electronics to address the rapidly growing ITs / VM3 market in India.

MIC Electronics received its first order from GMR Expressways, India for LED Variable Message Signs (VMS) for highway projects in Andhra Pradesh & Tamil Nadu. The order size is Rs 8 crore.

The company also announced that it has developed a global digital billboard exchange solution, GLOBIX, in collaboration with its subsidiary, InfoSTEP Inc. The GLOBIX solution facilitates clients to reach out to most optimal Out-of-home (OOH) advertisement locations to target brand advertising. The billboards owners will be able to optimize the utilisation of their advertisement space.

GLOBIX will be launched with an initial database of all MIC's digital billboard locations starting with Delhi Metro Rail stations at New Delhi. The total market potential of OOH advertising is projected to be more than Rs 17.5 billion over next 3 years. GLOBIX will allow MIC to play a key role in this market.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Suven Life bags 2 patents in Eurasia

Hyderabad, March 24: Suven Life Sciences Ltd has been granted two product patents in Eurasia for its New Chemical Entities (NCEs) for the treatment of disorders associated with neurodegenerative diseases. The patents (nos. 009193 and 009367) are valid till 2023 in all contracting countries such as Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan.

“We are very pleased by the grant of these patents to Suven for our drug candidates that are being developed for CNS disorders, which target an $18 billion potential market opportunity globally,” Mr Venkat Jasti, Chief Executive Officer of Hyderabad-based Suven Life Sciences, said in a release. Products out of these inventions, which were in pre-clinical development, may be out-licensed at the stage of clinical phase-I or phase-II stage. The granted claims of the patents include the class of selective 5-HT compounds discovered by Suven and are being developed as therapeutic agents.

They would be useful in the treatment of cognitive impairment associated with neurodegenerative disorders such as attention deficient hyperactivity, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, schizophrenia and Huntington’s, the release added.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Rao Musunuru becomes 'Healthcare Hero' in Florida

An AP born Kamma heart specialist has been honoured by the Tampa Bay Business Journal in Florida.

Dr Rao Musunuru, a Florida cardiologist, was honoured by the journal as a 'Healthcare Hero' and conferred with a Lifetime Achievement Award for his 26 years of service in cardiology, community education, charity and advocacy.

His work has helped make the Regional Medical Center Bayonet Point in Hudson, Florida, as one of the major heart hospitals in the United States.

He played a major role in the campaign regarding passage of anti-tobacco legislation last year. Dr. Musunuru served as the board secretary for the Floridians for Youth Tobacco Education, a coalition of the American Heart Association, American Cancer Society and American Lung Association, which waged the anti-tobacco drive.

Following the legislation, Governor Charlie Crist of Florida allocated 50 million dollar to the campaign last year.

The Governor then honoured Dr Musunuru with an 'Excellence in Caring and Sharing' award for his enormous voluntary contributions to improve the lives of senior citizens in Florida.

Last year, Dr Musunuru had won the American Heart Associations National Volunteer Advocates of the Year award.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Naturol to start production in April

Naturol Bio-Energy Ltd (Bhaskar Chalasani, Managing Director)is getting set for commercial production by April 2008.

The company started trial runs a few months ago with 2,500 tonnes of imported crude palmolein. It is expecting another shipment of 3,000 tonnes of crude palmolein from Malaysia in two to three weeks.

According to sources, the company has made all arrangements to export bio-diesel products to US and Europe-based multinational companies.

The plant, built at a cost of Rs 140 crore, will have an annual capacity of over 100,000 tonne of bio-diesel products.

The unit is expected to generate direct employment for 120 people.

The jatropha plantation, being raised in the factory premises, may take another two or three years to be ready for production of bio-diesel.

Meanwhile, crude oil will be used as raw material and agreements have been signed with Malaysian companies for import of palmolein, sources added.

Naturol Bio has plans to promote jatropha cultivation on 200,000 acres. In the first phase, jatropha is being cultivated on 5,000 acres in the Jaggampet area in East Godavari district and nearly 300 farmers are engaged in its cultivation.

“We are getting ready to supply more jatropha plants to the farming community,’’ said a company official.

'Soggadu' of Tollywood Sobhan Babu passes away

'Andhra Soggadu' Sobhan Babu died at his home in Chennai after he suffered a fatal spinal injury when he fell from the staircase.

Shobhan was 71 years old and is survived by four children — three daughters and one son

Born as Uppu Sobhana Chalapathi Rao to a middle-class family in a small village China Nandigama near Mylavaram Krishna District, Sobhan went on to become a romantic icon and was the top Tollywood hero for two decades. He made his film debut with Daivabalam directed by Vasanthkumar Reddy, but his first film to hit the screens was Bhakta Sabari.

Shobhan's Manushulu Maarali ran for 25 weeks, a record-breaking achievement in those days. He received the Filmfare Award four times, the Nandi Award five times and the AP Cine Goers Award eight times. The real surprise is that the Telugu actor won the Madras Cine Fan's Association's best actor award 9 times in his 40 years long career.

Although, Shobhan Babu was a widely acknowledged actor down south, he was never in favour of any of his children pursing acting as a career. He invested all his earnings safely in real estate business and settled down peacefully in Chennai.

The son of Uppu Suryanarayana Rao, he had has three sisters Dhanaranga, Jhansi and Nirmala, and a brother Sambasiva Rao.

He completed his schooling in Kuntamukkula Mylavaram. He pursued his Intermediate in Vijayawada and finished his degree at Andhra Christian College, Guntur. Later, he joined law course in Madras, but discontinued it.

He married Kanta Kumari on May 15, 1958; they had a son, Karuna Seshu and three daughters: Mrudula, Prashanti and Nivedita.

His first film was Bhakta Sabari. Chitrapu Narayana Murthy was his first director. His film Manushulu Maarali ran for 25 weeks which was a record at that time. His first colour film was Kannavari Kalalu.

He was popularly called as "Andhra Andagadu" meaning, "Most handsome person in Andhra Pradesh". He was honored with several Nandi Awards by the state of Andhra Pradesh Government. He was the most popular heroic actor for over 20 years. In fact, he was so popular that even to this day any good ladies family entertainer is referred to as "Shoban Babu type movie". He was honored with the honorific, "Natabooshana", which became his last name in movie credits.

Early days
Sobhan Babu made his debut in the film Daivabalam. After that he acted in many films playing small roles.

Veerabhimanyu (1965) was his first movie as a "solo hero". This movie turned out to be a big hit. However, he still played small roles in many films in order to earn money for his family. After the huge success of Manushulu Maarali, he acted in films until 1997.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Sentini plans distillery in Bengal

Sentini Bioproducts Ltd, (Tipirneni Seshagiri Rao, chairman) a diversified group based in Andhra Pradesh, plans to set up a distillery West Bengal with an investment of Rs 40 crore by the end of this year.

The project is part of the company's ambitious expansion plan to invest Rs 200 crore in setting up six distilleries across India by April 2008.

The plant would start commercial production next month, said TVV Ashok Kumar, deputy general manager (marketing), Senitini.

Apart from West Bengal, the company plans to set up bottling units in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Orissa and Kerala. The company was also planning to start bottling units in the north eastern states, said Kumar.

Initially Senitini will roll out two brands, namely Officers Special Premium Grain whiskey and Crazy Monk Triple X rum, followed by twelve other by April next. The minimum capacity of each of the distilleries would be 1 lakh cases per month, and would be spread between 2-3 acres of land, informed Kumar.

“About 30 to 40 per cent of the capacity of our distilleries will be used for our own brands, and the rest will be used for packaging other brands, depending on our future tie-ups with liquor companies,” he said.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Nandamuri Harikrishna filed his papers for Rajya Sabha

Nandamuri Harikrishna filed his papers as TDP candidate. TDP can send only one member to Rajya Sabha, given its strength in the state assembly. TDP president N. Chandrababu Naidu picked his brother-in-law and party founder N.T. Rama Rao's son Harikrishna for the post.

Harikrishna will become the fourth member of the NTR family along with N. Chandrababu Naidu, Daggubati Venkateswara Rao (son-in-law) and D. Purandeswari (daughter) concurrently holding an elected position. Mr. Naidu ensured that three other aspirants for the TDP ticket, Ummareddy Venkateswarlu, K. Ram Mohan Rao and N. Rajakumari were present when his brother-in-law filed the nomination papers

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Mahalaxmi Infra forays into wine production

Hyderabad-based Mahalaxmi Infra Ventures (India) Private Limited (Yarlagadda Harish chandra Prasad, Chairman & MD) is foraying into wine production by acquisition of Bhanodaya Wineries and its 70-acre vineyard in Tavaragiri village of Koppal district in Karnataka. Chigurupati Krishna Prasad, chairman of Granules India, a city-based pharmaceutical company, also has a 49 per cent stake in the joint venture.

Mahalaxmi Infra proposes to invest Rs 10 crore in two phases for setting up a 600,000-litre per annum capacity winery and development of grape farms over an extent of 300 acres in Tavaragiri.

The first phase of 300,000 litre capacity winery and 150 acre vineyard will be completed in two years, Mahalaxmi group chairman, Y Harish Chandra Prasad, told Business Standard.

According to Prasad, Bhanodaya Wineries was set up by Anil Kumar, an engineering graduate who had taken up grape farming. Mahalaxmi has acquired the 100,000-litre per annum capacity winery even before it commenced production. Now, the total project has been revamped and new machinery will be installed to meet modern production process and to enhance capacity. Anil Kumar will continue to be associated with the winery as its chief executive officer.

He said only red wine from three varieties of grapes including Cabernet and Siraj would be produced at the winery. The samples of the three varieties have now been sent to the Indian Institute of Horticulture, Bangalore, for testing their suitability for wine making.

Prasad is hopeful that like in the case of Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Himachal Pradesh, the Karnataka government will also soon put wine under the horticulture and food processing category and remove it from the ambit of the state excise Act.

Such a measure would be helpful not only in ensuring remunerative prices to grape growers but also in discouraging consumption of hard liquor by people at large. People are expected to shift to wine consumption as it would become cheaper.

At the same time, farmers would get a better price for their produce as the demand for grapes would increase with the rise in wine production. “Once this project is successful, we will encourage and also support farmers in setting up vineyards,” he said.

Besides wine making, the company’s plans include promotion of vineyard tourism in future. For this purpose, Mahalaxmi intends to construct guest houses at the place. “With moderate climate and picturesque scenes, we are hopeful that vineyard tourism will pick up in a big way,” Prasad said.

Vivin Labs inks Rs 500cr pact with US firms

Hyderabad, March 15: Vivin Laboratories Private Ltd, a Hyderabad-based pharmaceutical contract research and manufacturing services (CRAMS) services provider, has entered into an agreement with US chemical and drug distribution companies — Cascade Columbia Distribution and Syndel Laboratories — to manufacture high-value drugs and chemical compounds identified by them.

The contract will be in force for five years with a total value of $125 million (around Rs 500 crore), which subsequently can be extended by mutual consent.

The deal envisages supply of 1,800 tonne of specialty chemicals and veterinary drugs a year, Batta Parvataiah, Managing Director (A Kamma business man from Ananthapur district) of Vivin Laboratories, told mediapersons here on Friday.

Once this tie-up comes into effect in the next two months, the annual turnover of Vivin Labs is expected to touch Rs 70 crore in the next one year, from the current Rs 40 crore. This is excluding the revenues that Vivin will earn from the five-year contract, he added.

Vivin Labs has three facilities in Hyderabad, including two leased ones, to manufacture active pharmaceutical ingredients and anti-AIDS drug intermediates. Its new facility at the Jawaharlal Pharma City in Visakhapatnam, being set up conforming to the US Food and Drug Administration norms at an investment of Rs 35 crore, is expected to go on stream by October 2008.

“We are in the process of raising Rs 30 crore from venture capital firms to invest in our Vizag plant, which would house separate GMP (good manufacturing practise) blocks for manufacture of anti-HIV drugs, pills and oncology products, besides contract research facilities,” Parvataiah, said.

TDP names Nandamuri Harikrishna for Rajya Sabha

HYDERABAD: As expected, Telugu Desam’s highest decision-making body the Polit Bureau, on Friday unanimously named Nandamuri Harikrishna the party’s candidate for the sole Rajya Sabha seat for which it is eligible.

Briefing reporters following the meeting, senior TDP leader T. Devender Goud said the Polit Bureau had decided in favour of Mr. Harikarishna in view of his services rendered to the party after taking the views of partymen.

Parrying all questions, he said it was a “unanimous decision and there was no second opinion”.
He said the Polit Bureau expressed its gratitude to the four Rajya Sabha members of the party, whose term had ended, for their services.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Lanco looks to raise profitability through merchant power biz

Hyderabad, March 14: Power generation company Lanco Infratech Ltd is looking to increase the profitability of its business by selling a little less than 20% of the 8,000MW of power it will be generating by 2011 as merchant power.

“Lanco currently has 500MW under operation, while 7,500MW of capacity is under various stages of implementation. Of the total 8,000MW, we are looking at earmarking 1,400MW for merchant power business,” said Lagadapati Madhusudhan Rao, chairman and managing director, Lanco.

Merchant power is the term used by power companies to describe electricity sold in the open market. Power plants usually sign long-term power purchase agreements (PPAs) with state governments under which they agree to sell power to state-owned distribution utilities at a fixed rate for a specified period. The price at which power generating companies sell to the state will be lower than the price they can get in the open market.

Lanco previously announced its desire to focus on merchant power, but this is the first time Rao has spoken about the exact quantity of power the company hopes to sell through this route. The tariff of merchant power currently works out to Rs5 per unit, as against around Rs2.50 per unit under long-term PPAs. In view of the shortage of power production in the country, the price of Rs5 per unit is sustainable for the next three years, Rao said.

Of the proposed 1,400MW of merchant power allocation, 400MW would come from the second phase of the Kondapalli project in Andhra Pradesh, 500MW from the Baban project in Orissa and 500MW would come from the Amarkantak project in Chhattisgarh.

Power generation capacity being added by both public and private sector players in the country will kick in by 2011 and reduce the current situation of power shortage. This will lead to price of merchant power coming down to around Rs3.50 a unit, Rao added. “Even during the medium term of 2012-17, we expect to earn Rs3.50 a unit for merchant power, which is 40% higher than what we earn under PPA route,” he said.

“The world over MPPs (merchant power projects) generate high rates of return, where demand exceeds supply,” say Shankar K. and Shashikiran Rao, analysts with the Mumbai-based equity research firm Edelweiss Securities Ltd in a report dated 7 February 2008.

While in the current demand-supply scenario, merchant power generation seems attractive, any adverse developments in the long run will hurt unit price realization and reduce returns for these projects, the analysts add.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Indian-American comedian Hari Kondabolu

Talk about blowing in and out of town — Hurricane Hari, we should call this guy.

In less than two years, Hari Kondabolu has gone from an unknown open miker to the hottest comic in the city. After an electrifying performance at Bumbershoot last year, he was invited to perform at the prestigious U.S. Comedy Arts Festival sponsored by HBO and in February 2007 made his TV debut on "Jimmy Kimmel Live."

But this isn't just the story of a rising young comic — there are plenty of those. This is the story of a young man reaching for the hand-scalding torch of confrontational comics like Lenny Bruce and Richard Pryor.

Comically skewering on stereotypers and discriminators, Hari (pronounced "Huhree") Kondabolu has shaken up the local comedy scene like nothing calm, detached Seattle has seen before.

On Kimmel's ABC show, he made a joke that left the audience laughing and gasping: "My name is Hari. It's pronounced a few different ways in this country. Hurry, Ha-ree, Harry. As often, there's another layer to Kondabolu's comedy, as the epithet is meant for Arabs, not Indians.
Wednesday night, five months after his national TV debut, Kondabolu did the same joke here at

"That word is what I've been called," said Kondabolu, a New York-raised son of Indian immigrants. "Many times." (Though they did not call him that particular word, hecklers in Seattle on a few occasions have used racial slurs.)

Kondabolu recently made another excruciating decision: To leave, or not to leave.
He ultimately decided he needed the challenge of enrolling in the master's degree in Human Rights program at the London School of Economics.

After talking for a bit about how excited he is about the program and moving to London, Kondabolu's face suddenly fell.

"I'm sad, though," he said, smiling even as he slumped forward. "This city has been so good to me."

Now 25, he came to Seattle fresh out of college and went to work at an immigrant-rights organization called Hate Free Zone.

Kondabolu started doing comedy while attending college in Maine. After staying away from it for a time, he felt the need to perform again, unveiling his stand-up routine in Seattle. At first, he had the modest goal of making a few extra dollars — hardly dreaming he would be the opening act for Zach Galifianakis in Portland (Crystal Ballroom) and Seattle (Moore Theatre, March 10).
He'll continue to do comedy in London, and one can only wonder how far he will push his provocative comedy. Still young, he's a little on the all-over-the-place side, mixing in jokes about being a virgin with the experience of being a brown-skinned American.

Sometimes he pokes light-hearted fun at his culture:
"I'm not a Republican, but I was one, once — when I was 7 years old. Not my fault. The symbol of the Republican Party is an elephant, I'm a Hindu, I was confused."

As a teenage comedian, he started out with mild material based on his family, then had a realization:
Apparently, his heart was full of rage and satire.
A performance clip on his Web site ( shows him taking off his jacket to reveal an American flag shirt. He explains: "This is my Homeland Security-slash-angry white man security blanket."

Elsewhere, Kondabolu rants about the English robbing India of diamonds. "I know it sounds ridiculous to be bitter, but the Queen of England — that's just some old wearing my grandmother's jewelry."

Wish him luck: He plans to tell that one in England.
A farewell-to-Kondabolu comedy show takes place Wednesday night at Chop Suey. During the show, there will be a screening of the short film "Manoj," a mock-documentary Kondabolu wrote and starred in, about an Indian-American comic so desperate to please, he exploits every stereotype he can. (Manoj is played by Kondabolu, and many of his jokes are from his early years of comedy.)

Kondabolu says he is appreciative of the Seattle comedy scene, and leaves here with good memories, mainly. Asked via e-mail how Seattle treats immigrants and other minorities, he writes back, sounding far more like an activist than a comic:
"Seattle may be one of the U.S.'s most liberal cities, but it is not free of the problems that plague this nation. There is segregation, gentrification, and racism in Seattle, just like every other major city in America ...

"So many people seem so satisfied with being 'liberal,' that it becomes easy to ignore problems in this city that go against these values," he added.

Wearing his comedian hat again, he says he is excited about challenging audiences in England, the one-time empire that for so long controlled India. Though a big tongue-in-cheek, he calls on the American Revolution and Indian struggles for independence:
"I want to continue creating meaningful work that is able to bring my truth to power and provide thought-provoking comedy to as many people as will listen," he said.

He's looking forward to seeing how his comedy translates to British audiences.
"Will they find the fact that my identity as an Indian American means 'my people' have beaten their once mighty empire twice — once standing up, and once sitting down — as hilarious as I do?
"Does anyone, in general, find this as hilarious as I do?"

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Reliance Power names Chalasani as CEO

New Delhi, March 8 Reliance Power, a Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group company, on Saturday named Mr J.P. Chalasani as its new Chief Executive Officer. Mr Chalasani, a former whole-time Director (Business Development) of group company Reliance Energy Ltd, has taken over as the Chief Executive of the company which listed on the bourses recently, a company press release said here.

Formerly with National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC), J P Chalasani joined the Reliance group in 1995 and has over 27 years of experience in the power sector. Commissioning of the 2100 MW Ramagundam Thermal Power Station, the largest-sized thermal power project at the time, was the key highlight of his over 15-year stint with NTPC. Chalasani has handled various assignments for Reliance ADA group, including the successful bidding for two ultra mega power projects.

“Chalasani has tendered his resignation from the Board of Reliance Energy Ltd with effect from March 7,” it said.

Reliance Power Ltd is currently developing 13 power projects with a combined installed capacity of 28,000 MW

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Hiranandani, Lahari Infra to invest Rs 750 cr in multi-services SEZ

Hyderabad, 7 March: Real estate major Hiranandani Group and Hyderabad-based Lahari Infrastructure Ltd (Gaddipati Haribabu, Chairman and MD) will invest Rs 750 crore in a multi-services Special Economic Zone (SEZ) to come up about 40 km from here as a 50:50 joint venture.

“Our Group and Lahari will invest Rs 150 crore each as equity in the venture and the remaining money will be mobilised from banks and other financial institutions. We will be equal partners in investments and revenue-sharing,” Mr Surendra Hiranandani, Founder, Hiranandani Group, told newspersons after the ground-breaking ceremony for the project here on Thursday.

The SEZ, christened as ‘Hiranandani Upscale’, will have world class infrastructure for all industries, including information technology, pharmaceuticals and banking. Already, two pharmaceutical companies, including Suven Life Sciences, have committed to take two lakh sq. ft facilities each in the SEZ.

Albeit initial investment is pegged at Rs 750 crore, the SEZ would involve Rs 12,000 crore investment over a period of 14 years, they stated.

Mr Gaddipati Haribabu, Chairman and Managing Director, Lahari Infrastructure Ltd, said appropriate infrastructure would be put in place around the SEZ to convert it into a seamless integrated community with ‘walk to work’ concept.

Complaint against Ramoji dismissed

The First Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate, Ms Y.H. Prameela Reddy, on Friday rejected a complaint filed by the Crime Investigation Department against media baron Ch Ramoji Rao and Margadarsi Financiers which he owns.

The inspector-general (CID), Mr T. Krishna Raju, who is the authorised officer of Margadarsi Financiers case, filed the complaint against Mr Ramoji Rao and his firm for alleged violation of Section 45-s (1), (i) and 45-s (2) of the Reserve Bank of India Act 1953.

However, the additional chief metropolitan magistrate passed orders rejecting the complaints stating that a special leave petition was pending in Supreme Court with regard to the same matter.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Navyuga Engg to invest Rs 1900 cr in Astharanga port

Navyuga Engineering Company Limited (Chinta Visveswara Rao, chairman & MD) plans to invest Rs 1,900 crore in the first phase for setting up of an all-weather port at Astharanga in the mouth of Devi river in Puri district of Orissa.

It has proposed to invest Rs 1,500 crore for the port and Rs 400 crore for railway connectivity. The proposed port at Astharanga will have a cargo handling capacity of 20 million tonne per annum in the first phase. The company will sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Orissa government soon.

The state law department had given its concurrence and the approval of the finance department was awaited, sources said.

“The proposal is awaiting the nod of the state finance department and will be sent to the chief minister after the required approval from it. The MoU with Navyug will be signed after that,” Priyabrata Patnaik, principal secretary, commerce and transport department, told the media.

The port will be utilised for exporting the finished products from Orissa, supply of coal from Talcher to the south India based steel and power plants, aluminium, alumina, ferro alloys, auto-spares.

Similarly, it would be utilised for import of items like limestone, caustic soda and sulphuric acid. The first phase of the port was expected to be commissioned by 2011, he pointed out.

He said the Centre was targeting a port capacity of 2 billion tonnes by 2016 from 780 million tonne at present.

However, Patnaik, refused to comment on the Navyuga Engineering’s proposal to set up a power plant close to the proposed port saying it was being processed by a different department.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Most visited sites on the web (8th place) was founded by Ramu Yalamchi

hi5 is a social networking website, which, throughout 2007, was launched in 2003 and is now one of the leading social networks in the world — ranked by Alexa® as a top 8 website globally, No-3 among social networking websites come after MySpace and Facebook and the #1 or #2 most-trafficked website in nearly a dozen countries, including many in Latin America, Europe and Asia. hi5 had over 98 million members.

Ramu Yalamanchi is an American entrepreneur. He founded the social networking web site hi5 and is its CEO. During college, Ramu was a partner at Sponsor Net New Media. Ramu received a B.S. in Computer Science from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

In hi5, users create an online profile in order to show information such as interests, age and hometown and upload user pictures where users can post comments. hi5 also allows the user to create personal photo albums and set up a music player in the profile. Users can also send friend requests via e-mail to other users. When a person receives a friend request, he or she may accept or decline it, or block the user altogether. If the user accepts another user as a friend, the two will be connected directly or in the 1st degree. The user will then appear on the person's friend list and vice-versa.Some users opt to make their profiles available for everyone on hi5 to view. Other users exercise the option to make their profile viewable only to those people who are in their network. The network of friends consists of a user's direct friends (1st degree), the friends of those direct friends (2nd degree) and the friends of the friends of direct friends (3rd degree).

Market share
While hi5 maintains its strong hold in Central America, which is available in more than twelve languages and offers a simple, fun and safe online experience. It faces tough competition in Asia from many social networking sites. As of 2007, hi5 is the leading social networking site in several, diverse countries including.
• Colombia • Guatemala • Haiti • Honduras• El Salvador • CostaRica • Cyprus• Dominica • Dominican Republic • Ecuador• Jamaica • Kuwait • Malta • Mauritius Mongolia • Nepal • Nicaragua • Peru • Portugal• Mexico• Romania • St. Kitts and Nevis • Thailand • Trinidad and Tobago • Tunisia.